The past few weeks I’ve been excited about a novel, a documentary, and a collection of poetry. All three creators of these works live here, in Los Angeles, as do most of my favorite writers, filmmakers, and comics. All that gives me pause once again about leaving.
At one time I had friends who were passionate about books and films and ideas, but they became distracted by raising children. They still read and see shows, of course, just not with the same zeal. It seems more like an afterthought, and they tend to consume stuff that’s popular and in the news now because they don’t have time to ferret out the other stuff.
I suppose that is what I meant a few posts back about feeling lonely– since I no longer have friends who are as passionate about culture, I feel more engaged with the actual producers of culture themselves, but I’m not actually friends with them. Even when I manage to get myself to an event and meet them, I can’t seem to bridge the gap. The fact that so many of them live here, though, does make me second guess my plans to move.
My job, however, continues to drive me mad. I talked to a woman this week who said that, when she was an executive director of a nonprofit, she used to attend a support group of women in the same position once a month so they could vent. Burn-out factor was extremely high. She’s now an academic and enjoying the far more reasonable pace of her job.
I don’t have that option however, so I’m stuck with my dilemma of whether to stay here, in the land of the creatives, where life is stressful and difficult and people are doing amazing things all around me but connection and participation feels just out of reach, or leave for a slower-paced, easier life, where I would have time and things would be more accessible but there would simply be less to do.